April 06, 2020

PRESS RELEASE: Mercato Employees Donate a Portion of Salaries to Expand Food Relief Packs in Partnership with the Community Foundation of Utah

Donations in addition to $1 million fund created by The Savory fund founders and restaurant founders of Mo’Bettahs Hawaiian Style, Swig, R&R BBQ to retain 1,600 restaurant employees.

Salt Lake City, April 14th, 2020 — In the wake of challenges from COVID-19 and the resulting skyrocketing unemployment due to the quarantine, Mercato’s employees today unanimously announced plans to donate a portion of their salaries to fund Relief Pack meals for first responders, healthcare workers and others hit hard by COVID 19 in partnership with the Community Foundation of Utah. These employee donations which range from 10% and 25%, complement actions of the Mercato’s Savory Fund founders, along with portfolio restaurant founders from Mo’Bettahs Hawaiian Style, Swig, and R&R BBQ who have committed $250,000 each to create a $1 million fund designed to keep their 1,600 restaurant employees throughout Utah, Arizona and Idaho paid and working during this time of uncertainty.

“The practices at Mercato invest in companies at critical inflection points,” said Greg Warnock, Managing Director, Mercato Partners. “At this time, our community is in such a moment. I am incredibly grateful to the entire team at Mercato who approached us with a unanimous offer to donate 10% of their salaries—some going beyond-- to our Relief Packs program. We are pleased to partner with the Community Foundation of Utah to ensure Relief Packs funded by these donations get to those most in need at this time.”

Mercato Savory Fund created the Food Relief Packs program to offer low-cost, tax-deductible meals at a highly discounted price that can be purchased by employers, institutions, or organizations for their teams. Each hot meal pack feeds six to eight people, comprised of prepared food from Costa Vida, Mo’Bettahs Hawaiian Style, or R&R BBQ and costs $25.

“The Mercato Savory Fund’s Relief Packs initiative and the Mercato employee donations give us a profound way to help not only the restaurant workers so disproportionately impacted by the economic shutdown surrounding COVID 19, but also those fighting this pandemic on the front lines,” said Alex Eaton, CEO of the Community Foundation of Utah. “We are committed to partnering with the Relief Packs program to ensure meals go to those most in need and encourage others to do so. It will help us fight this battle and preserve vital elements of our economy.”

Currently, Relief Packs are being served to more than 1,000 people per day, with the goal to eventually feed 8,000 per day. Businesses, institutions or investors interested in donating funds for these meals can sign up at ReliefPacks.org and click on the Relief Packs Partners button to learn more.
All R&R BBQ, Swig and Mo’Bettah’s Hawaiian Style locations in Utah, Arizona and Idaho remain open for drive-thru and curbside pickup dining options during this time of social distancing.

About Mercato Partners
Mercato Partners is a multi-practice firm providing both capital and guidance for founders and companies in a range of stages and a variety of industries ranging from technology firms to food and beverage operations to branded consumer companies. The experienced Mercato team of investors, analysts and in-house performance operators combines forces with an extended network of advisors and service providers to accelerate growth. For more information, please visit www.mercatopartners.com.

About the Community Foundation of Utah

The Community Foundation of Utah is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit grantmaker and serves as Utah’s catalyst for philanthropy by fostering accessible, collaborative, and innovative giving in our communities, now and for generations to come. Since establishment in 2008, the organization has fostered nonpartisan community partnership and has facilitated over $55 million in grants to Utah’s nonprofit sector. For more information, go to www.utahcf.org, call 801-559-3005, or email .